Hyderabad: In a major move to ensure sufficient supply of fruits and vegetables in Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) limits, Department of Horticulture has decided to rope in farmers, farmers’ groups, women’s SHGs and traders to set up an integrated supply chain for fruits and vegetables.
The project is being taken up under the Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH) scheme. Under this initiative, the department will extend subsidy for asset creation including cold storages, operating refrigerated vans, ripening centres, collection and distribution centres, among other activities.
The idea is to ensure regular and sufficient supply of fruits and vegetables in the GHMC area. At present, conventional practices of transportation are being adopted. Generally, fruits and vegetables should arrive in the city within 14 to 15 hours of harvest, but it is now taking over 30 hours, a senior official from Department of Horticulture told Telangana Today.
In GHMC area, the average requirement of vegetables is 9.52 lakh metric tonnes a day. At times, supplies of tomatoes, ladies finger, brinjal, carrots are in surplus while chilli, beans, capsicum, cauliflower and other vegetable are in short supply, the official explained. “Apart from poor assessment of required stocks, these practices involve lot of middlemen who eventually end up making good profits at the cost of farmers. Under the Integrated Supply Chain for Fruits and Vegetables, the agencies or SHGs will regularly interact with farmers in the neighbouring eight to nine districts and discuss the market requirements,” he said, adding that they will ensure there was no surplus or deficient supply of fruits and vegetables.
The project will cover the entire supply chain linking from production centres to consumption centres and assure year-long availability of fresh fruits and vegetables.
The identified agencies or SHGs, will grade the stocks and top quality will be sent to city markets while others will be sent to hotels and processing units. Apart from reduction in wastages, the concept will also help farmers achieve better realisation for their produce, the official said.
Under the project, emphasis will be on adopting an end-to-end holistic integrated approach covering pre-production, production, post-harvest management, besides effective marketing to assure appropriate returns to farmers. In addition to promotion of latest technology and setting up requisite infrastructure for cultivation, special focus will be on cold chain and marketing infrastructure to extend the shelf life of perishables.
At present, applications are being invited from interested farmers, SHGs, traders and others for executing the project. After scrutiny, final orders will be issued and this could take about 45 days, the official added.
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